People Who Talk Incessantly – What Mental Illness Do They Have?

Over the years, I’ve run across a few people who never seem to shut up. I’ve probably met five or six such individuals, and all of them were female.

These people will start up a one-way conversation with you even when they don’t know you, then they will proceed to babble aimlessly with a myriad of pointless, incoherent, stream-of-consciousness type discussions that occasionally include very personal details of their lives. They will not stop until you get up walk away from them, and even then they sometimes try to continue on with their dialogue.

They also seem to be totally oblivious to people’s facial expressions, such as boredom (when will this end?), fear (holy crap this person is raving lunatic), urgency (I really have to get back to work now), disgust (that was way more information than I wanted to hear), annoyance (I can’t take this anymore), etc.

What mental illness would cause this particular pattern of behavior? Would it be safe to scream at them to shut up, or could they be dangerous??


Probably not a mental illness per se. They might be anxious, or self-absorbed, or highly defined by their relationships with others.

Not every annoying personal habit is a result of mental illness. Sheesh!

I believe that is referred to as ‘femininity’.

(Now running far, far away.)

1.A pathological condition of a part, organ, or system of an organism resulting from various causes, such as infection, genetic defect, or environmental stress, and characterized by an identifiable group of signs or symptoms.

2.A condition or tendency, as of society, regarded as abnormal and harmful.
Obsolete. Lack of ease; trouble.
i would say that society would regard this kind of babbling as abnormal and harmful.

How ever the talking probably isn’t the only thing going on with them , and we would have to know what other symptoms go along with it. It could be anything from Schizophrenia to Manias or It could just be bad social queues.

The one person I met who did this was a male and a successful investor. He just didn’t seem to know how to end a conversation.

If it interfered with their ability to socialize effectively or made relationships difficult or impossible wouldn’t that be considered some kind of disordered behavior?

Non psych guy, just asking.

True, but as the OP suggests, some people just yap. And in some social circles, yapping about nothing is considered desirable–it might be called “being a conversationalist.”

Many diagnoses in DSM require this criterion (that the problem affects social or work functioning), but being annoying in this way, in the absence of other criteria, is just unfortunate and could be a focus of therapy, but isn’t in and of itself a diagnostic marker.

My mother calls it Noninon’s disease.

I believe its called diarrhea of the mouth.

The last two people I encountered with this disorder happened to be male. And I’m a management consultant who primarily works with lawyers so I’m used to Chatty kathy’s. I still had to be like “dude , shut the fuck up!”

Pressure of speech.

CMC fnord!

[Laura Kightlinger] So the other day, I was on this plane, I could totally tell the guy next to me *really wanted me * …to shut up!
Do you know how I knew? Because he kept saying …SHUT UP! WOULD YOU SHUT UP![/Laura Kightlinger]

Logorrhea or Logorrhoea is a mental disorder with excessive talkativeness, although I doubt the any of the people you speak of have this.

Some conditions that might cause excessive talking, are:

  1. Bipolar disorder
  2. ADHD
  3. Stimulant drug use
  4. Schizophrenia
  5. Social ineptness
  6. Nervousness
  7. Happiness
  8. Recent trauma
  9. Being a middle child
  10. Recent isolation with small children.

I’m sure there are others. Excessive talking, in itself, isn’t a pathology.

Interesting. The main person I know who does this is my aunt, who is, in fact, a middle child.

What’s your thinking here?

Has anyone considered the people are crackheads?

I’m serious; the rooming house tenants I am forced to associate with as part of my job are mostly crackheads, and they will not shut up.

I know someone who is sort of like this. They go on and on and on and rarely if ever show any interest in knowing anything about the person they’re speaking to…I mean, speaking at.

I once tried to say something about this to them, in a diffused, indirect way. I suggested, while we were talking about dating and members of the opposite sex, that they try asking questions. Their response?

Most people are just so BORING. And anyways, it’s “just not me” and I don’t want to act like someone else. If people can’t like me the way I am (self absorbed, though they don’t seem to realize that) then there’s no point in knowing them at all.

What can you do but shrug? Some people are self-absorbed.

My boss is like this. I truly believe she suffers from a form of mania. Once I had a friend in the office and when my boss called in I put her on speakerphoneand started doing other stuff. My buddy absolutely couldn’t believe it was real - that she just kept talking like I wasn’t there. On and on and on and on and on, changing subjects, randomly inserting “gossipy” type stuff from her neighborhood to things about her children, etc etc etc etc. Friends jaw just dropped. He still talks about it.

Here, I’ll stick a label on the phenomenon youv’e described. It’s “<insert medical jaron>”. Now you can say this person’s incessant talking is caused by “<insert medical jargon>”.
In your case, being Surreal…naaah, too easy…

Small, unsubstantiated personal observation.

The first two people with this problem I had the misfortune to meet, mentioned a lack of maternal affection/attention. “My mother wouldn’t hold me” kind of thing.